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Code of Ethics

American Belgian Tervuren Club Code of Ethics

Approved by ABTC Membership 2/15/2020

Objective & Purpose: To promote cooperation and cordial, mutually supportive relations among members of the American Belgian Tervuren Club, to promote conscientious and responsible ownership of the breed, and to encourage high ethical standards in the breeding, training, and competition of Tervuren. Members shall act solely in the best interests of the breed in all situations, and shall assist and encourage any other member or non-member in upholding these interests.

1. I will appreciate the unique nature of the Belgian Tervuren and will work to develop the characteristics this breed has inherited through selective breeding.

2. I will be responsible and care for my dogs in a manner that promotes their robust mental and physical health. I will ensure that all dogs in my care receive nutritious food and fresh water, shelter, exercise, socialization, training, human companionship, and appropriate veterinary care; in this way, I will strive to bring each dog to its full potential as a companion and in whatever other areas or activities are chosen.

3. I will educate myself about the Belgian Tervuren, the breed’s history and function, the AKC Breed Standard, health concerns, socialization and training. I will support and abide by the rules of the ABTC and AKC.

4. I will act with responsible and courteous behavior as a representative of the ABTC in both face-to-face encounters and in social media. I will respectfully communicate thoughts and opinions and refrain from unnecessary or unsubstantiated criticism of other members, breeders, their dogs or dogs of their breeding, the ABTC and/or the ABTC Board. I will endeavor to display the integrity, kindness, and sense of humor that typify the Belgian Tervuren breed. This includes having control of my dog at all times, cleaning up after my dog in public places, and leaving public facilities in the same condition in which they were found. 

5. I will be honest. I will truthfully and realistically represent my Belgian Tervuren in terms of quality, health and genetic history.

6. If I choose to breed, I will educate myself about genetic problems, heritable disorders, breeding, whelping, raising puppies, and socialization. Prior to breeding, I will carefully consider the health and condition, temperament, and conformity to the breed standard of the stud dog and bitch, and ensure that appropriate health checks have been obtained. I will use my knowledge with the goal of producing physically and temperamentally healthy, sound, quality Belgian Tervuren.

7. I will undertake breeding with a lifelong commitment to every dog I produce, whether I am the breeder or stud dog owner. Ways to provide lifetime support might include providing documentation (health checks, vaccination records, pedigree, educational materials) to owners; assisting and encouraging owners to register with the AKC; considering the use of Limited Registration when applicable; ensuring continued contact with puppy buyers over the lifetime of the dog; and promising to take back the puppy/dog at any time or assist the owner with placement.

8. I will not wholesale litters, or knowingly sell to pet dealers, catalog houses, or other sources of commercial distribution. I will not donate or sell dogs for research, unless it is to study a specific breed defect by a veterinarian recognized by the ABTC. I will not engage in the overbreeding of stock for profit without regard for quality and health. I will not abandon or surrender a Tervuren dog, puppy or litter to an animal shelter or similar facility.

9. I shall endeavor to share information or knowledge and to assist newcomers and others who exhibit a sincere interest in the Belgian Tervuren breed.

10. I will be a guardian of the spirit, health, and well-being of the Belgian Tervuren. Should I become aware of the mistreatment, abuse, or need for relocation of any Belgian Tervuren, I will make every effort to be of assistance by notifying the breeder, the local authorities, and Belgian Tervuren Rescue, Inc., and by helping in any other way in which I am able.

By joining the American Belgian Tervuren Club, I accept this Code in its entirety. I recognize that this Code describes general conduct and that individual situations may arise that are not specifically mentioned; in those situations, I will endeavor to protect the interests of the breed by conducting myself courteously, respectfully, responsibly, and in a manner that reflects credit on myself, the Belgian Tervuren breed, and the American Belgian Tervuren Club.

— Approved by the membership of the American Belgian Tervuren Club Feb 15,2020, this Code of Ethics was initiated by our members to help insure the future of the breed. The Code of Ethics is a MANDATORY code which applies to all members in good standing.